Technology-driven sanitation startup Fresh Rooms has raised seed funding of Rs 3 crore ($415,000) from an angel investor it did not name.
“We are in conversation with other investors as well,” Ashutosh Giri, founder and chief executive officer of Fresh Rooms, said in a statement. ”The funding will be used to expand the brand to key cities and busiest destinations of the country.”
Founded in June last year, Indore-based Fresh Rooms operates pay-and-use washrooms based on an Internet of Things (IoT) model, where cleaning takes place automatically after every use and requires minimal human intervention.
The service charge paid by customers is converted into points that can be redeemed to buy refreshments such as tea, coffee or any eatables from the attached Fresh Rooms cafe.
Run by Feeinsta Consulting & Services Pvt. Ltd, Fresh Rooms is currently operational in some parts of Madhya Pradesh and aims to expand to Delhi and other metropolitan cities.
“The perception about public toilets in India is completely gloomy. That’s why we have taken this challenge to change the entire ecosystem of public sanitation,” Giri added.
Fresh Rooms says its mobile application allows users to gather detailed information about surrounding restrooms, such as the location of the nearest public toilet, details of opening hours, accessibility, parking and other services.
Giri has more than 11 years of professional experience in sales and relationship management. Before starting Fresh Rooms, he was an assistant manager at Daikin Airconditioning India Pvt. Ltd. He was previously a sales executive at Panasonic India.
In the broader hygiene space, Redcliffe Hygiene Pvt. Ltd, which manufactures toilet seat sanitiser spray PeeSafe, earlier this year raised Rs 6.3 crore ($1 million) in a fresh round of funding from new and existing investors.
Another startup operating in the hygiene and wellness space is PeeBuddy, whose funnel-shaped device helps women urinate while standing. The startup secured funding of Rs 2.96 crore from Indian Angel Network.